Ghûls are vile creatures that are often the target of Uruk hunting parties. While weak individually, they often attack in great numbers to overwhelm their enemies. They appear as small, hairless bipedal things with glowing yellow eyes, long, dog-like skulls, and sharp teeth and claws. While they possess a generally muscular physique, they have a slouching gait, crawling across the ground on all fours and bounding in great leaps when chasing prey.
Ghûls are the only predators of Morgul Bats, with those that survive the bat's venom naturally mix the it with their caustic digestive juices, creating the deadly cocktail of projectile vomit used by the Spitter Ghûls and Ghûl Matrons. If a Ghûl Matron falls in battle, another member of her pack will molt into a Ghûl Matron and take her place. The Ghûl reproduction cycle involves laying eggs, hidden throughout Mordor in caves and places away from light. Ghûls are protective of their eggs, as when the eggs are distributed they will swarm the area.
These feral, nocturnal beasts inhabit (or more accurately, plague) Mordor. They live in damp, fetid places or underground lairs, and only emerge from their nests at night when they swarm in packs to bring down prey.
Ghûls are carnivorous and not at all picky; they will feast on dead, rotting flesh and innards, or one another if the situation calls for it. They do not speak, but are clever creatures and their attacks make use of numbers to ensure a foe is overwhelmed.
Targets unfortunate enough to be chosen by them are also assaulted by the Ghûls' acidic and deadly venom, which the creatures can spit over great distances.
Ravenous Night Lurkers
"Ghûls hate the light, so let's douse it and see what comes a-calling." -- Latbag the Starver
Nocturnal pack scavenger, Ghûls are among Mordor's most dangerous pests. Swarming out of mounds or caves at night, they're individually no match for Uruks but overwhelming when they surround their prey.
Most Ghûls attack with tooth and claw, but some can belch a glob of toxic acid at a distance. They flee from light, and sometimes a torch is enough to keep a small pack at bay.
Ghûl packs are led by a Ghûl Matron, generally the largest and toughest of the Ghûls in the group.
Ghûls have a weak melee bite or scratch attack, in addition to a spitting attack that can inflict poison damage. When swarming, their large numbers can make moving difficult, restricting Talion's ability to dodge the venomous projectile attacks of their fellow Spitter Ghûls.
The Ghûl Matron is a larger, tougher variety of Ghûl.
Ghûls emerge from Ghûl mounds, which will only appear during the nighttime. They can be found attacking patrolling Uruks or Uruk strongholds. Their attacks can be prevented by an Uruk Torchbearer, who will attempt to illuminate a Ghûl mound in order to stop Ghûls from spawning.
With the addition of the Lord of the Hunt downloadable content, Ghûls can be summoned even in the daylight with the use of Ghûl Bait. By shooting Ghûl Bait with Elf-shot, a nearby Ghûl mound will erupt and summon a swarm. In Middle-earth: Shadow of War, Ghûls can be summoned even in daylight by shooting Ghûl Eggs with Elf-shot, causing Ghûls to swarm the area.
- Exact etymology is not known, but Ghûl is likely derived from the Black Speech word gûl, which can mean evil spirit or phantom, especially one associated with death. The word is found in Nazgûl as well, which means "Ringwraiths".
- Ghûls are only present during the night, unless baited.
- Ghûls hunt in packs; if one is alone it will quickly call others to help it.
- If listened to carefully, Ghûls make the "Gollum" choking sound during fights.
- It is implied that Ghûls are intelligent, with some individuals in-game wearing simple loincloths or clothes made of animal remains.